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The Vatican

Tickitaly are official agents for the Vatican and we offer skip-the-line tickets as well as both group and private Vatican tours. We've been doing this for well over ten years, have hundreds of 5 star reviews, and offer a wide range of ticket types, themed tours, short tours, long tours, all with English language guides, all without needing to join long ticket queues.

Vatican City may be the smallest state in the world, covering just a quarter of a square mile, population of around 1,000, but it welcomes over 5 million visitors every year and has some serpentine queues. So how to avoid them, where to go, what is there to see, when can you visit, and what do you need to know in advance?

The Vatican - tickets, tours and detail

Vatican tickets
An image of the Vatican Key

All tickets are official, skip-the-queue, direct-entry tickets to the Vatican, and allow full access to the Sistine Chapel and all of the Vatican Museums. You can also visit St Peter's - see further down to learn more about this.

Tickets are vaild for the full day, and you may stay as long as you wish, Vatican opening hours permitting. Why book in advance? Well, queues on the day can be enormous, with hours spent just waiting and wasting your precious time; with our system you just show up at the Vatican, join the special queue for those that have booked in advance, present your voucher, and you're in.

Click here to begin the ticket booking process - just click the calendar and you'll be shown what's available on that day.

Vatican tours
An image of the Vatican seal

We offer a range of Vatican tours, all of them are skip-the-line, english-language and led by an official, licensed tour guide.

We offer a range of guided group tours from Monday to Saturday, some lasting a couple of hours, some three or even four hours. Some include a guided visit to St Peters, others leave you to explore St Peters by yourself after the tour has finished.

Tours include a guided visit to the Sistine Chapel, and we even have a guided tour of the extensive Vatican gardens, and one that takes the secret route from the Vatican to the nearby Castel Sant'Angelo.

Click here to begin booking a tour of the Vatican; as ever, clicking the calendar will show you what's on offer from one day to the next.

The Vatican Museums
An image of the Vatican Museums entrance

People occasionally refer to 'the Vatican Museum', singular, and the actual scale of the collection within the Vatican City comes as something of a shock. This is museums plural, ten collections forming unarguably the world's greatest collection of art and artefacts from the past few millennia.

Classical antiquity, the Renaissance, the Etruscan era, booty looted from Egypt and the furthest corners of the ancient Roman Empire ... all this and much more is to be found in this cornucopia of world art. You could spend weeks exploring the museums and still need to come back for more.

Every single Vatican ticket or tour that we sell includes skip-the-line access to the Vatican Museums.

The Sistine Chapel
An image of the Sistine Chapel

To be very clear - there's no ticket for just the Sistine Chapel - if you buy any Vatican ticket, you can visit the chapel ... if you buy any Vatican tour, you'll be visiting the chapel. Be prepared, though - it's busy, it's nearly always full, and all visitors have only a limited time inside.

That said, of course you'll be wanting to visit, and of course you'll come out with a crease in your neck - it's the frescoes that draw the visitors, and it's the frescoed ceiling by Michelangelo that draws the eye.

We have a page here with a bit more information on the Capella Sistina, and you may like to know that we are sometimes able to offer visits that allow a slightly less frenetic visit - just click the calendar on our tickets or tours page to see what's available.

St Peter's Basilica
An image of St Peter's Basilica

Entrance to St Peter's Basilica is free, no ticket or booking is needed. So far, so clear ... but it's the largest church in the world, it holds 60,000 people, and there are queues, it's a given. If you want to skip the queues, that's possible, though only as part of an official St Peter's guided tour - a guided group tour (we have several), with a self-guided audio tour using an app on your smart device, or as part of a larger Vatican tour that includes a visit to St Peter's.

The architecture is on a daunting scale, the art works are beautiful and bountiful, and a tour is strongly recommended if you'd like to leave with anything but a cursory knowledge - there is just so much to see, and so much to miss. It is possible to ascend to the cupola (dome), but you'll need to buy a ticket on the spot in order to do so.

Click here to see which tours of St Peter's are available - having clicked on the calendar you'll be shown current availability; if you'd like to see if there's a larger Vatican tour that includes a visit to St Peter's when you're visiting, then use the calendar on this page.

Vatican gardens
An image of the Vatican gardens

The Vatican Gardens are enormous, covering more than half of the City State. But they are private, there is no general public access, and the only way to visit them is as part of an official guided tour, be that a walking tour or a shorter tour on an open-topped bus.

The Giardini Vaticani are a huge series of gardens and parks, covering, across 57 acres, almost all of the Vatican Hill. They were established during Renaissance and Baroque times, and are abundantly decorated with fountains and sculptures, as well as being home to a few buildings, notably the Governer's Palace and Radio Vatican.

The open bus tour lasts 45 minutes, accompanied by an audio-guide. The walking tour lasts around 2 hours and heads off early in the morning - each tour runs six days a week. Both finish at the Vatican Museums and include full access to those and the Sistine Chapel.

Please go to our Vatican guided tours page, click on the calendar, and you'll be shown what is available that day.

We hope the above should help with your advance planning. If you still have questions, then please take a look at our Vatican FAQ page. If you would like to read more about the individual Vatican Museums, then head here.

Lastly, the map below shows some of the key locations within Vatican City - click the markers for booking, information and review links.